Traditional and Classic Tiramisu

This is a double recipe. It makes a huge 10 inch spring form pan full to the top of the Lady Fingers, with a little left over, if you like to like the pan! ;)
Course Dessert
Cuisine Italian (Venetian)
Prep Time 30 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 12
Author Valerie Lugonja


  • 2 x 500 ml Mascarpone cheese , room temperature
  • 2 bags of Lady Finger biscuit cookies (4 packets in each bag)
  • 1 dozen extra large eggs , room temperature
  • 12 scant tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 ¼ cup strong homemade espresso , OR (if absolutely necessary)
  • 3 tablespoons instant espresso into 1 ¼ cup hot water
  • ¾ cup Kahlua or Grand Marnier
  • 1 10 " spring form pan


Instructions for filling:

  1. Separate eggs; put yolks in a small bowl and whites in your largest mixing bowl (the large bowl of your Kitchen Aid, or something similar)
  2. Beat whites with a pinch of salt until soft peaks form, then a wee bit longer; transfer to another bowl
  3. Place egg yolks into large bowl whites were in; add sugar to the yolks and beat until dissolved, thick, foamy, and creamy (a good 5-7 minutes)
  4. Add Mascarpone to the yolk mixture, 500mL at a time; beat until thick, light, and creamy: 7-10 minutes
  5. While yolk concoction is beating; prepare espresso

Instructions for Lady Finger "crust";

  1. Prepare spring form pan by reversing the bottom to enable easy removal of cake (edges or lips of bottom of spring form pan must face downward)
  2. Pour into shallow dish with sides; add Kahlua (or Grand Marnier) to espresso, and dip each side of each Lady Finger into it, extremely quickly: dunk-dunk
  3. Line sides, then bottom of spring form pan with biscuits, sugar side in, depending upon the quality of the biscuit, as best side faces out

Putting the Tiramisu together:

  1. Fold whites carefully into yolk mixture, retaining as much air as possible
  2. Using a large scoop, or measuring cup, gently ladle Mascarpone mixture over bottom layer of biscuits; each layer will take three very generous (heaping) cupfuls of Mascarpone mixture
  3. Dip more biscuits into the espresso liquid; layer over the Mascarpone mixture
  4. Repeat with lush layer of Mascarpone mixture over the biscuits, then another layer of biscuits dipped in espresso liquid
  5. Finish the final layer with the remaining cream
  6. Freeze immediately in pan, as is; after 6-8 hours, remove sides from spring form pan
  7. Using a table knife, release bottom of spring form pan from cake; wrap tightly with plastic wrap
  8. Take out of freezer two hours before service; wrap a large ribbon around the cake when still frozen, if presenting cake whole
  9. Sprinkle top with cocoa; slice and serve garnished with fresh berries and a mint leaf
  10. This will keep beautifully for at least three months wrapped well in freezer

Recipe Notes

These Lady Fingers absorb a lot of liquid very quickly, so don't take your eyes off of them! Dip each in the liquid, and turn over, and out. Fast-fast-fast.